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Don't be bullied on genetically modified food

Trust the Greens - no GMOs

GM food is not only bananas – it could become big business if people who invest in GMOs and biotechnology get their way. From the test-tube to the dinner plate GM food would be controlled by a handful of super-powerful organisations. Almost all GM crops currently released belong to four companies: Monsanto, Dupont, Syngenta and Bayer. The same enterprises control a lion's share of the world market for pesticides.

But in Europe resistance to GM crops is growing and many European regions are uniting forces in a strong network fighting for GM free zones and clean seeds. Also, against the pressure of the industry and despite a WTO case launched by the US against GMO-policies in the EU, the European Union has set strict rules for the release of GMOs. European legislation guarantees the right for GMO free production, and stipulates that no GMOs may be approved for commercial cultivation in the EU before binding rules on co-existence guarantee the full liability of the polluter. However, it is high time for the Commission to come up with a detailed proposal on Community-wide civil liability and insurance in respect of possible financial damage and with guidelines on how to act in order to keep conventional and organic crops GMO free.

Moreover, the authorisation procedure for the placing on the market of GMO has come under criticism as being neither democratic nor scientifically justified. Authorizations are conducted by the Commission, exclusively based on the opinions of a single EU body, the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA). EFSA is not equipped to assess the long-term environmental impact of GMOs and it does not care about their socio-economic effects. Until now, EFSA has never given a negative recommendation for the placing on the market of a GMO, what leaves its experts being suspect to be more enthusiastic than neutral about GMOs.

The EU labelling provisions for food prescribe a mandatory labelling of food produced of GMO. However, food from animals that have been fed by GM feed (e.g. milk and meat) does not need to be labelled! It is imperative to close this gap in legislation- in order to enable the 70% of European consumers who have said that they don't want GMs on their plate to say NO to GM food.

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